Galápagos nothing short of spectacular

Posted by Olga and Hans

“All site visits have their own charm and new highlights”

Olga and Hans have been sailing for many years and Olga’s 70th birthdag was the perfect moment to make their long lingering dream to visit the Galápagos Islands come true. We chose a perfectly suitable vessel. Read all about their fantastic experience here and enjoy the beautiful images:

The welcome at Hotel Vieja Cuba was like taking a warm bath

“Olga’s 70th birthday was our perfect moment to go on a journey to the Galápagos Islands. We soon came across Aves travels. Being sailors ourselves, the sailing ship offered by Aves Travels and the accompanying small scale size of this vessel (maximum 16 guests) suited us extremely well.

After some consultation back and forth with Marianne, we decided to go to Quito for 2 days, followed by an 8-day expedition cruise with the Beagle. As a photo enthusiast, I had my Canon with telephoto lenses and my Gopro ready for use well before departure.

The welcome at Hotel Vieja Cuba was like taking a warm bath and walking around in Quito (center and botanical gardens with adjacent sports fields) was very worthwhile. The end of the day with a dinner at restaurant Vista Hermosa, situated on the hill above the old town, was highly successful, offering a magnificent view around sunset.

It turned out to be a school of flying fish that were being taken for supper by sharks

The next day we flew to Galápagos and boarded the Beagle after a visit to the Darwin Research Station (Giant tortoises). Our itinerary included Floreana, Española, San Cristóbal, León Dormido, Santa Fe, South Plaza, North Seymour, Bartholome, Chinese Hat, Cerro Dragón (Santa Cruz), Black Turle Cove and back to Baltra Island for the return flight via Guayaquil.

During the entire trip we had a full program each day with a walk, snorkeling, panga rides, another walk and again snorkeling interspersed with very nutritious and delicious meals. Already the first evening after dinner we were startled by a lot of splashes around our ship. It turned out to be a school of flying fish, possibly attracted by the lights of the boat, that were being taken for supper by a school of sharks (guide Walter estimated the number at least 100). An impressive moment.

The fact that the animals (iguanas, sea lions, red and blue footed boobies, frigate birds, etc.) remain in your vicinity on the Galápagos Islands and see no threat in us human beings is one of the most striking sensations. This also offers the possibility to take pictures at your leisure, some of which you can see below. All site visits have their own charm and new highlights. All in all, a surprisingly varied program that will continue to impress for a long time. All photo and film material will certainly help with that.

Thanks to Marianne for the excellent care of the holiday and the attentive emails at crucial moments before, during and after the trip.


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